CIMM – Undocumented Populations – March 3, 2022

Date Announced:

March 3, 2022


Key Messages
* While there are no accurate figures representing the number or composition of undocumented migrant population in Canada, estimates range between 20,000 and 500,000 persons

* Research suggests most undocumented individuals live in large urban centres and typically work in seasonal and informal sectors, such as construction, agriculture, caregiving and housekeeping.

* Undocumented migrants are a vulnerable group due to their lack of immigration status, as was seen during the COVID-19 pandemic. They have limited access to health care, social services or employment protections.

* Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is in the exploratory phase of considering options to implement the commitment in the mandate letter to “Build on existing pilot programs to further explore ways of regularizing status for undocumented workers who are contributing to Canadian communities”, taking into consideration lessons learned from the Temporary public policy for out-of-status construction workers in the Greater Toronto Area, which is implemented in partnership with the Canadian Labour Congress.

*This public policy was updated in July 2021 to ensure it is as facilitative as possible to allow eligible workers to regularize their status in Canada. By providing a pathway to permanent residence status, this initiative recognizes the economic contribution of long-term resident construction workers and addresses their vulnerabilities due to lack of immigration status.

Departments and Agencies:

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

Type of Administrative Action:

Immigration Category:


undocumented; regularization

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